Newborn found dead in hospital

A newborn girl’s body was found under mysterious circumstances in a hospital waste truck in the premises of Mata Chanan Devi Hospital in west Delhi’s Janakpuri on Monday. The victim’s family alleged that her body was missing from the hospital’s mortuary.

Reacting over the body being found in the truck, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said strong action will be taken against the guilty. A show cause notice has also been sent to the hospital by Delhi Health Minister Surendra Kumar Jain. Delhi Police have registered a case against two employees of the hospital and are investigating the matter.

Her family members claimed that the one-day-old infant died in the hospital in the wee hours of Monday. She was born in Khanna Nursing Home in Janakpuri with an enlarged brain and was taken to Mata Chanan Devi Hospital.

A blood test and x-ray were conducted after which the doctors said blood transfusion would be given to the infant. Late after midnight, the infant’s father got a call from the hospital saying the infant passed away at 1.30 am. The doctor asked the parents to take possession of the body.

Since it was past midnight, the parents paid Rs 1,500 as mortuary charges, though as per rules, no mortuary charges can be collected till six hours after death.
On Monday morning, when the relatives went to collect the body at the mortuary, they found the infant's body kept in the hospital waste truck along with other hospital wastes.

The family promptly called police and a complaint was lodged. Rajesh, the girl’s father, said his wife Neetu gave birth to the girl at Khanna Nursing Home on Sunday afternoon. In the evening, the child fell sick and the doctors at Khanna Nursing Home told him to admit the child in another hospital. Rajesh then admitted the child at Mata Chanan Devi Hospital around 6.30 pm.

The hospital administration took Rs 35,000 as an advance for admitting the child. Rajesh paid the full amount after which his child was admitted.

Mortuary charge

“Around 2 am, I was informed by hospital staff that my baby had died. I reached the hospital and they told me that the body has been shifted to mortuary and they charged Rs 1,500 for that,” said Rajesh.

On Monday morning, when Rajesh reached the hospital, he was told that the body of his child was missing from the mortuary. He inquired with the hospital staff but they said they did not have any information.

Meanwhile, an employee of the hospital told Rajesh that he saw a baby’s body in a waste truck that was about to leave the hospital.

Police said a case has been registered with Janakpuri police station under section 297 of Indian Penal Code after the parents made a formal complaint accusing hospital authorities of acute negligence.

“We are investigating the matter and two employees of the hospital seem to be involved in the incident,” said Ranvir Singh, Deputy Commissioner of Police (West).
The two employees have been identified as Pawan, 29 and Satish, 25, both class fourth employees. Police claimed that they were not absconding and would be arrested soon.

“The body was covered and thrown into a garbage bin carrying biological waste of the hospital,” said a police officer. Police officers further stated that the baby died of infection. Also, during the entire course of the girl’s treatment, her family was kept in the dark as to what kind of treatment was been given to the child.

Union Women and Child Development Minister Krishna Tirath described the incident as “inhuman” and said her ministry would ask the National Commission for Protection of Children’s Rights to inquire into the matter.

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